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Before relocating to the Netherlands, find out more about the cost of living, taxes and other financial matters that may impact you.
  • Cost of living

    The amount of money you will need each month largely depends on your lifestyle. You will need around €1500 per month to cover basic expenses. Below are some sample figures for a PhD fellow.

    • rent of a furnished room: approx. €550 to €900 per month
    • food: approx. €250 per month
    • public transport, bicycle: about €50 per month
    • insurances: €100 to €150 per month
    • entertainment and leisure: €150 to €200 per month
  • Dutch tax system

    Tax rates on salaries start from 33% and can go up to the maximum of 52%. A part of these taxes consists of social security premiums. The fiscal year runs from 1 January to 31 December. Around the first week of February, the tax authorities (Belastingdienst) will send out tax return forms.

    Filing a tax return

    If you are employed by the UvA, tax is withheld from your salary each month. Most likely you will not have to file a tax return. However, if you had tax-deductible expenses during the year you could be entitled to a tax refund, so it’s often a good idea to request a form and file a tax return.

    If you are not employed by the UvA, your income may or may not be subject to taxation. Please note that if you received income which should be taxed but hasn't been yet, you are legally obliged to request a form and file a tax return.

    Read more about how to file your taxes on the I amsterdam website.

  • 30% tax ruling

    As a foreign national employed by the University of Amsterdam (UvA), or as an UvA employee posted to another country, you may, under certain conditions, be eligible for the so-called 30% ruling. This allows you to receive part of your salary – up to a maximum of 30% – as a tax-free allowance, resulting in a higher net income. The allowance is intended to compensate for the additional costs incurred as a result of your temporary stay in another country. 

    • Discuss your eligibility and the option of applying for the 30% ruling with your UvA personnel adviser. 

    You can get more detailed information about the 30% tax ruling on the I amsterdam website.

  • Social security and allowances

    Social security in the Netherlands provides financial security when your income is affected by events such as disability, job loss or old age.

    Whether you will be participating in this system during your stay depends on your individual situation. As a rule, if you're employed by the University of Amsterdam, you are automatically covered. Fellows, however, are often exempt from participating. 

    You can read more about social security in the Netherlands, whether you need to pay into it, and how to claim benefits, on the Expatica website.

  • Pension

    If you are employed by the the UvA, pension contributions are automatically deducted from your salary. This means that you build up pension rights in the Netherlands. Your pension contributions are administered by the ABP Pension Fund.

    When you leave the Netherlands to carry on your career in another country, you have several options regarding these funds. If your pension is small, you may opt for a lump sum payment. For more information, please contact ABP directly.